Facebook Just Launched M, an AI Assistant For Facebook Messenger

Facebook launched its digital assistant named M on Thursday for the US-based users of its Messenger app. The digital assistant will pop up in the chat window and suggest helpful actions to the users.

The move is an effort to compete with others such as Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Apple and Samsung, all of which have personalized assistant, and maybe even a precursor for a broader launch.

M uses artificial intelligence and “suggests relevant actions to help manage conversations or help get things done,” Facebook product managers Laurent Landowski and Kemal El Moujahid said in a blog post. “We are bringing the power of M’s AI technology to support and enhance the Messenger experience and make it more useful, personal and seamless.”

M will simplify actions such as sharing money with friends, sending locations etc for the users. Facebook had announced M in 2015 as an experiment. The expansion of Messenger can be seen as a step in the social network’s broader AI goals.

Facebooks founder Mark Zuckerberg has created a personal digital assistant named Jarvis for his home that helps in simple household tasks.

Just recently Samsung launched its own personalized assistant Bixby with its flagship models Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus and it will be interesting to see what consumers choose as their preferred AI assistant in upcoming days.

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Facebook Has Completed Cloning Snapchat As Stories Are Now Available To Everyone

It’s not new news that the social networking giant is ripping off Snapchat. Facebook has added Snapchat’s biggest feature to WhatsApp and Instagram in the past and now it looks like the company has finally completed its copying mission with the public rollout of stories on Facebook.

In case you are wondering, Stories on Facebook was on trial in some countries since the January of this year, so many users have tested and used the features that let someone put photos and videos for 24 hours which live on top of the news feed. Responses to stories are not public as they are sent to user inbox, which, again, is just like the Snapchat mentioned above.

It looks like Facebook is actually serious about Stories as the app will have a dedicated button for capturing them and the company has also added a handful of filter effect to better suit the millennials.

The company is also teaming up with some third parties to create themed filters that currently include Minions, Power Rangers, and Wonder Women.

Stories on Instagram have been successful, and some tech folks have even thought that Instagram’s implementation of Stories is better than Snapchat.

Not everyone will use them ( I don’t even have Facebook app installed on my Smartphone), but it is sure that Stories are here to stay.

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WhatsApp is testing a way to actually make money

A report by Reuter states that Whatsapp has begun testing ways for businesses to directly message their consumers. So Whatsapp may soon be ready to make real money.

Whatsapp used to charge a $0.99 annual fees, but after being acquired by Facebook, Whatsapp abandoned the annual fee. Whatsapp had then said that it will let the users interact with businesses and organization with the aim of making money. So this step by Whatsapp wasn’t that unexpected.

The Reuters report said, that some Y Combinator startups have begun testing the feature,

“The trial is still in the early stages, said Umer Ilyas, co-founder of Cowlar Inc, one of the startups involved. The system is highly anticipated in remote places where WhatsApp is especially popular, he said.

Cowlar makes collars for dairy cows, collecting data on their activity and recommending changes to improve milk yield. The company, which is testing the collars in the United States, wants to use WhatsApp to send automatic alerts from the collars directly to farmers if say, a cow is not behaving normally, Ilyas said.”

Another report by Mashable also supports the Reuters report. It suggests that a variant of Whatsapp, called Whatsapp for Business is being tested in India.

This step is quite similar to what Facebook did with its Messenger. The change had led to a huge increase in business related bots in Facebook. Whatsapp is more popular communication tool than Messenger in many areas, so taking a similar approach with Whatsapp makes sense.

Now it has to be seen when this features for Whatsapp will be officially announced.

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Facebook Live Now Han An Audio-Only Mode (For Face Shy And Podcasters)

Facebook has been focussing on live events since last year, the introduction of video streaming and 360-degree video are one of the most notable additions to the platform. Facebook’s Live Video streaming, creatively called Facebook Live is now available in for audio only mode.

As Facebook announced it in its blog, publishers who only want to share audio streams instead of full-blown videos, can now do it directly within the app.

We know that sometimes publishers want to tell a story on Facebook with words and not video. We’ve even seen some Pages find creative ways to go live and reach audiences with audio only by using the Facebook Live API or by adding a still image to accompany their audio broadcast. Our new Live Audio option makes it easy to go live with audio only when that’s the broadcaster’s preferred format.

–  Shirley Ip, Product Specialist Facebook

It will be a great addition for podcasters who had to use some still images on the video, and obviously, Live Audio will come in handy for publishers and broadcasters who are living in areas with slow-network connections.

It is a good thing for listeners too, as it will consume less bandwidth of your data plan. If you are an Android user, you can keep listening to the stream even if your device is locked, which is not possible for Video streams. It won’t work on iOS, but on iPhones, you will still be able to keep listening when you browse your Facebook feed.

Background playback on Android
Background playback on Android

Facebook has cleared that Live Audio is, as of now, only available to select publishers including BBC World Service, LBC, Harper Collins. The feature will be available for general consumer in early 2017.

Now that Facebook has started taking steps against fake news and the Messenger now supports group video chats, Facebook’s December seems to be going great.

Have anything to add to the story? Share with us in the comments below.

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Now You Can Do Group Video Chats on Facebook Messneger

After years since Facebook Messenger was launched, the app finally added Group video chat today.

After years since Facebook Messenger was launched, the app finally added group video chat today.

As Facebook announced in a blog post today, you can now start a new group video chat in the app by tapping video call on a group conversation or by creating a new group within the app

Obviously, everyone in your group needs the Facebook Messenger installed on his phone to make/accept these calls.

If you have Google Hangouts to do group video calls, you will find messenger way of handling multiple users similar, if there are more than 6 participants, you will automatically see a carousel like UI where messenger will show the face of active users. If there are less than seven users, you can pick between an option to see all participants at once though.

You can have a max of 50 participants on a group video call.

 

Facebook Messenger is one of the most popular apps in app stores and Facebook forcing users to install it in order to use Facebook messages has paid-off well The feature is available on iOS, Android and web version of the messenger.

Have anything to add to the story? Share with us in the comments below.


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Facebook Reveals A Plan to Fight Fake News

After being criticized by many folks in media and by the general public, Facebook has revealed a plan to deal with the fake news problem.

Fake news has been proved to be a big problem for Facebook in past months, mostly during the US elections. After being criticized by many folks in media and by the general public, Facebook has revealed a plan to deal with the problem.

We believe in giving people a voice and that we cannot become arbiters of truth ourselves, so we’re approaching this problem carefully. We’ve focused our efforts on the worst of the worst, on the clear hoaxes spread by spammers for their own gain, and on engaging both our community and third party organizations.

– Adam Mosseri, VP, News Feed

In its blog, the company announced today that the Social Network will now take help of third parties and users to identify and remove fake news from the site. First up; Facebook is testing some ways for its users report a news story should they think it is fake. Simply click on the upper right corner of the post, and you will see options to report the story.

facebook plan to fight fake news

Apart from this, Facebook is now working with several third party fact checking services to detect and identify fake stories and hoaxes.  Once a story has been flagged by the community as fake, the social networking giant will send it to fact-checking organizations, if found false, Facebook says that anyone clicking on the link will be warned and if possible, users will be provided with the correct news.

And finally, Facebook says that it is taking some other steps reduce financial incentives for fake news sites. Now spammers won’t be able to spoof domains. However, the company has not disclosed how.

It can’t be guaranteed that the above steps will be able to stop fake news completely, but it is good to know that Facebook has started to take actions.

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Facebook Added HD Video Uploads For Android, Floating Windows Are Being Tested Too

Uploading High Definition videos on Facebook is nothing new, the web version and the iOS app has been supporting it for nearly two years, However, even though Android Phones have been supporting HD and 4K video captures for a long time, users were not able to upload them using the app.

Facebook adds support for HD Video Upload in Android

Better late then never, Android Police reported that Facebook has finally added support for uploading high defination videos today.

You can find it under app’s settings menu, where you can see a toggle to enable or disable HD Video upload. Also, you can see from the screen that the app also has added support for adding High Definition photos as well.

If you are not that much into uploading Videos on Facebook, there is one under testing feature that you may like. Facebook is testing Floating Windows for Video Playback (A bit like FloatingTube that is for Chrome’s desktop versions). Also, the company is testing support for offline video download and letting users select specific video quality.

You will be able to select video resolution for in-app playback
You will be able to select video resolution for in-app playback

Have anything to add to the story? Share with us in the comments below.

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Facebook ‘Borrows’ Snapchat Features (Again)

Facebook is really impressed with Snapchat, the social network has cloned one more feature into its app and this time it is for the Facebook app itself.

Facebook is really, really impressed by Snapchat. So much that after cloning Snapchat stories and naming them Instagram Stories, the social network has cloned one more feature into its app.

The social networking giant recently announced Virtual Masks in live streams and the company is now testing some new photo effects and masks in its main camera app for still images and videos.

In other -simple- words, get ready for more face swaps on your facebook feed.

But it’s not a complete rip-off of Snapchat filters, the photos will disappear after 24 hours -unless someone comments on the photo to start a conversation. And, to make sure people notice the new feature, Facebook will place a camera icon on the top left of the main app.

But wait, Facebook has got inspiration from one more app

Apart from Snapchat, Facebook is also copying some features from photo editing app Prisma. In case you missed it, Prisma allows you to convert your photos into paintings.

It is worth knowing that Facebook tried to buy Snapchat back in 2013, but CEO of Snapchat did not allow that.

What do you thing about the upcoming face swaps in Facebooks? Share with us in the comments below…

 

Why Do People Comment Dots (.) On Facebook?

A Getting Geek Subscriber asked us about why someone would comment a Dot on a Facebook post, we explain why people do it.

Social Media is an ever changing thing and many times, you may not be able to keep up with it completely. New acronyms are made daily and people keep finding new ways to use social networks.

Recently, a Getting Geek Subscriber Kristy Miller asked me about why someone would comment a Dot on a Facebook post.


Hi Saurabh,

Hope that you are Having a good day.

I recently saw a few times that people on Facebook are commenting Dots (.) on post. Why would anyone what to do this, because I can’t think how will it add value to the post? Is there a hidden meaning.

I did not ask on the comments as I thought someone may think that I am noob.

Thanks, Kristy


Well, Actually the reason for typing a Dot in a comments is really simple. If anyone other comments on the post, you will be notified.

Facebook’s news feed keeps updating constantly and it becomes hard to keep an eye on comments on a post, and after you have commented on a post, Facebook notfies you if someone has commented on the same posts.

I don’t really think that it is the best way to keep an eye on the post as Commenting Following is a better (and Polite) idea.

But, this is internet and people don’t want to waste time. If you use sites like 9Gag, you would have known as people comment Dots often on the posts.

However, there is a better way too keep up with the comments on a post. You can simple click on a downwards arrow at the top right area of the post and then click on Enable Notifications on this post.

After you have done that, you will be notified about all events to the posts.


Do you have a question too?

If you have any question but you are too afraid to ask to people directly, drop it here. I will do my best in answering it.

Facebook Messenger Now Supports Multiple Accounts

You can new use multiple user accounts in the Facebook messenger. It can be found in Accounts settings where you can sign-in with multiple user accounts.

There were many rumors about the upcoming changes in Facebook’s Messenger for Android, some of them were SMS Support and Multiple Account support for Messenger.

Today, Half of that has made it to the App, You can new use multiple user accounts in the Facebook messenger. It can be found in Accounts settings where you can sign-in with multiple user accounts.

The user can choose to make the account access open or  make the Facebook messenger ask for the password every time when someone tries to open it.

If you choose the latter, others can still see notification counts next to your name in the accounts screen. However, other details such as message contents will be kept hidden until (obviously) you enter your password and sign-in.

Currently, the Multiple Account support for messenger is only available for Android, There is no official announcement from Facebook about when (or if) it will be made available for iOS or the web version of the messenger.

 

 

MAKING IT EASIER FOR YOUR WHOLE FAMILY TO USE MESSENGERAll over the world, hundreds of millions of people share their…

Posted by Messenger on Friday, February 19, 2016

Faceboook is focusing more on messenger than ever, there are talks about running Ads in the app too, time will tell how it goes.

For more updates, don’t forget to subesctibe to Getting Geek.